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Private sector: Who is accountable? for women’s, children’s and adolescents’ health. 2018 report. Summary of recommendations.
Geneva, Switzerland, World Health Organization [WHO], 2018. 12 p.This report presents five recommendations, which are addressed to governments, parliaments, the judiciary, the United Nations (UN) system, the UN Global Compact, the Every Woman Every Child (EWEC) partners, donors, civil society and the private sector itself. Recommendations include: 1) Access to services and the right to health. To achieve universal access to services and protect the health and related rights of women, children and adolescents, governments should regulate private as well as public sector providers. Parliaments should strengthen legislation and ensure oversight for its enforcement. The UHC2030 partnership should drive political leadership at the highest level to address private sector transparency and accountability. 2) The pharmaceutical industry and equitable access to medicines. To ensure equitable, affordable access to quality essential medicines and related health products for all women, children and adolescents, governments and parliaments should strengthen policies and regulation governing the pharmaceutical industry. 3) The food industry, obesity and NCDs. To tackle rising obesity and NCDs among women, children and adolescents, governments and parliaments should regulate the food and beverage industry, and adopt a binding global convention. Ministries of education and health should educate students and the public at large about diet and exercise, and set standards in school-based programmes. Related commitments should be included in the next G20 Summit agenda. 4) The UN Global Compact and the EWEC partners. The UN Global Compact and the EWEC partners should strengthen their monitoring and accountability standards for engagement of the business sector, with an emphasis on women’s, children’s and adolescents’ health. They should advocate for accountability of the for-profit sector to be put on the global agenda for achieving UHC and the SDGs, including at the 2019 High-Level Political Forum on Sustainable Development and the Health Summit. The UN H6 Partnership entities and the GFF should raise accountability standards in the country programmes they support. 5) Donors and business engagement in the SDGs. Development cooperation partners should ensure that transparency and accountability standards aligned with public health are applied throughout their engagement with the for-profit sector. They should invest in national regulatory and oversight capacities, and also regulate private sector actors headquartered in their countries.
Geneva, Switzerland, World Health Organization [WHO], 2018. 80 p.In line with the mandate from the UN Secretary-General, every year the IAP issues a report that provides an independent snapshot of progress on delivering promises to the world’s women, children and adolescents for their health and well-being. Recommendations are included on ways to help fast-track action to achieve the Global Strategy for Women’s, Children’s and Adolescents’ Health 2016-2030 and the Sustainable Development Goals - from the specific lens of accountability, of who is responsible for delivering on promises, to whom, and how. The theme of the IAP’s 2018 report is accountability of the private sector. The 2030 Agenda for Sustainable Development will not be achieved without the active and meaningful involvement of the private sector. Can the private sector be held accountable for protecting women’s, children’s and adolescents’ health? And if so, who is responsible for holding them to account, and what are the mechanisms for doing so? This report looks at three key areas of private sector engagement: health service delivery the pharmaceutical industry and access to medicines the food industry and its significant influence on health and nutrition, with a focus NCDs and rising obesity.
Maternal and Child Health. 2018 Sep 8;  p.Promoting exclusive breastfeeding (EBF) is a highly feasible and cost-effective means of improving child health. Regulating the marketing of breastmilk substitutes is critical to protecting EBF. In 1981, the World Health Assembly adopted the World Health Organization International Code of Marketing of Breastmilk Substitutes (the Code), prohibiting the unethical advertising and promotion of breastmilk substitutes. This comparative study aimed to (a) explore the relationships among Code enforcement and legislation, infant formula sales, and EBF in India, Vietnam, and China; (b) identify best practices for Code operationalization; and (c) identify pathways by which Code implementation may influence EBF. We conducted secondary descriptive analysis of available national-level data and seven high level key informant interviews. Findings indicate that the implementation of the Code is a necessary but insufficient step alone to improve breastfeeding outcomes. Other enabling factors, such as adequate maternity leave, training on breastfeeding for health professionals, health systems strengthening through the Baby Friendly Hospital Initiative, and breastfeeding counselling for mothers, are needed. Several infant formula industry strategies with strong conflict of interest were identified as harmful to EBF. Transitioning breastfeeding programmes from donor-led to government-owned is essential for long-term sustainability of Code implementation and enforcement. We conclude that the relationships among the Code, infant formula sales, and EBF in India, Vietnam, and China are dependent on countries' engagement with implementation strategies and the presence of other enabling factors.
New York, New York, UNICEF, 2017. 6 p.West and Central Africa faces a unique set of challenges in its efforts to reduce the impact of child marriage – a high prevalence and slow rate of decline combined with a growing population of girls. This statistical snapshot showcases the latest data and puts forward recommendations on policy and actions to eliminate this practice.
Providing Family Planning Services at Primary Care Organizations after the Exclusion of Planned Parenthood from Publicly Funded Programs in Texas: Early Qualitative Evidence.
Health Services Research. 2017 Oct 20;OBJECTIVE: To explore organizations' experiences providing family planning during the first year of an expanded primary care program in Texas. DATA SOURCES: Between November 2014 and February 2015, in-depth interviews were conducted with program administrators at 30 organizations: 7 women's health organizations, 13 established primary care contractors (e.g., community health centers, public health departments), and 10 new primary care contractors. STUDY DESIGN: Interviews addressed organizational capacities to expand family planning and integrate services with primary care. DATA EXTRACTION: Interview transcripts were analyzed using a theme-based approach. Themes were compared across the three types of organizations. PRINCIPAL FINDINGS: Established and new primary care contractors identified several challenges expanding family planning services, which were uncommon among women's health organizations. Clinicians often lacked training to provide intrauterine devices and contraceptive implants. Organizations often recruited existing clients into family planning services, rather than expanding their patient base, and new contractors found family planning difficult to integrate because of clients' other health needs. Primary care contractors frequently described contraceptive provision protocols that were not evidence-based. CONCLUSIONS: Many primary care organizations in Texas initially lacked the capacity to provide evidence-based family planning services that women's health organizations already provided. (c) Health Research and Educational Trust.
New York, New York, UN Women, . 7 p. (Policy Brief No. 1)UN Women’s project "Promoting and Protecting Women Migrant Workers’ Labour and Human Rights: Engaging with International, National Human Rights Mechanisms to Enhance Accountability" is a global project funded by the European Union (EU) and anchored nationally in three pilot countries: Mexico, Moldova, and the Philippines. The project promotes women migrant workers’ rights and their protection against exclusion and exploitation at all stages of migration. One of the key results of the project has been the production of high-quality knowledge products. These have provided the foundation of the project’s advocacy and capacity building objectives. This Brief draws from the project’s knowledge products and provides an overview of the key situational and policy concerns for women migrant workers in each of the three pilot countries.
Accelerating change by the numbers. 2016 annual report of the UNFPA-UNICEF Joint Programme on Female Genital Mutilation / Cutting: Accelerating change.
New York, New York, United Nations Population Fund [UNFPA], 2017 Jul. 92 p.The 2016 Annual Report for the UNFPA-UNICEF Joint Programme on Female Genital Mutilation / Cutting provides two perspectives. This main document, "By the Numbers," analyses progress in quantitative terms, using the Results Framework as a basis. It provides an account of how the budget was allocated and offers profiles of each of the 17 programme countries (excepting Yemen). The profiles present facts on the national context, summarize key achievements, and share operational and financial information.
New York, New York, United Nations Population Fund [UNFPA], 2017. 80 p.The 2016 Annual Report for the UNFPA-UNICEF Joint Programme on Female Genital Mutilation / Cutting provides two perspectives: The main document analyses progress in quantitative terms, provides an account of how our budget was allocated and offers profiles of each of the 17 programme countries. This companion booklet uses a qualitative and narrative approach to examine more specifically the challenges, complexities and achievements on the ground. It explores the innovative approaches the Joint Programme teams, partners and activists employ to deconstruct the social norms that allow FGM / C to continue in many communities.
[London, United Kingdom, IPPF, 2015]. 2 p.The Indonesian Planned Parenthood Association (PKBI/IPPA, the IPPF Member Association in Indonesia) and other civil society organizations (CSOs) have identified a number of ‘high priority’ pledges: progress towards these pledges is critical for increasing access to modern family planning (FP) methods. The government has made some progress towards its pledges, but existing efforts are not enough to deliver on its promises by 2020. In addition, other problems and gaps have emerged. The government must address these problems urgently. Civil society calls on the government to: Create a dedicated budget line for family planning and increase budget allocations for family planning. Currently, only 2.2% of the health budget is allocated for nutrition and maternal health and family planning, which falls short of the US $263.7 million target pledged at the 2012 Family Planning Summit. Although the government increased the health budget by 1.5% from 2014-2015, it is not clear how much of the increase was allocated to family planning; Amend Population Law 52/2009 to state that family planning services must not discriminate on the basis of marital status. To implement this amendment, the government must issue new health service delivery guidelines and raise awareness of the policy change; Establish mechanisms to involve young people in government decision-making processes. Youth programmes, in particular, must take into account young people’s needs and demands in order to be effective.
[London, United Kingdom, IPPF, 2015]. 2 p.The Family Planning Organization of the Philippines (FPOP, the IPPF Member Association in the Philippines) and other civil society organizations (CSOs) have identified a number of ‘high priority’ pledges: progress towards these pledges is critical for increasing access to modern family planning methods. Civil society calls on the government to: Improve implementation of the Reproductive Health Law by issuing clear guidance to government agencies and local government units with regards to what their duties and responsibilities are in relation to the RH Law; Implement behaviour change programmes for bureaucrats, health workers and civil servants so they clearly understand their responsibilities with regards to the RH Law, and to eliminate any possibility that they will misinterpret the Law.
Geneva, Switzerland, WHO, 2017. 56 p.The WHO Guidelines on Ethical Issues in Public Health Surveillance is the first international framework of its kind, it fills an important gap. The goal of the guideline development project was to help policymakers and practitioners navigate the ethical issues presented by public health surveillance. This document outlines 17 ethical guidelines that can assist everyone involved in public health surveillance, including officials in government agencies, health workers, NGOs and the private sector. Surveillance, when conducted ethically, is the foundation for programs to promote human well-being at the population level. It can contribute to reducing inequalities: pockets of suffering that are unfair, unjust and preventable cannot be addressed if they are not first made visible. But surveillance is not without risks for participants and sometimes poses ethical dilemmas. Issues about privacy, autonomy, equity, and the common good need to be considered and balanced, and knowing how to do so can be challenging in practice.
2016 Nov; New York, New York, UN Women, 2016 Nov. 2 p.Violence against women and girls is one of the most universal and pervasive human rights violations in the world, of pandemic proportions, with country data showing that about one third of women in the world report experiencing physical or sexual violence at some point in their lifetime, mainly by their partners. UN Women provides knowledge-based policy and programming guidance to a diverse array of stakeholders at international, regional and country levels often partnering with other UN agencies and stakeholders. UN Women’s work is broadly focused on a comprehensive approach to ending violence against women and girls that addresses legislation and policies, prevention, services for survivors, research and data. The briefs included in this package aim to summarize in a concise and friendly way, for advocates, programmers and policy makers, the essential strategies for addressing violence against women in general, for preventing violence and providing services to survivors in particular.
2016 Dec; New York, New York, UN Women, 2016 Dec. 20 p.The Convention on the Elimination of All Forms of Discrimination Against Women (CEDAW) is an international legal instrument that requires countries to eliminate discrimination against women and girls in all areas and promotes women’s and girls’ equal rights. CEDAW is often described as the international bill of rights for women, and is one of the key international agreements that guides the work of UN Women in achieving gender equality and empowering all women and girls. CEDAW for Youth is a youth-friendly version of CEDAW, that was authored by a young woman and young man. This resource explains why CEDAW is important to youth, describes CEDAW’s impact in advancing gender equality and human rights for women and girls around the world, and summarizes the articles of CEDAW, including the specific forms of discrimination that must be ended and how CEDAW is implemented and monitored.
Female genital mutilation/cutting and violence against women and girls strengthening the policy linkages between different forms of violence.
2017 Feb; New York, New York, UN Women, 2017 Feb. 20 p.Violence against women and girls (VAWG) manifests in different forms. These include intimate partner violence, non-partner sexual violence, sexual exploitation and trafficking, and harmful practices such as female genital mutilation/cutting (FGM/C) and child, early and forced marriage, among others. Programmes to end harmful practices and programmes to end intimate partner violence and non-partner sexual violence are often planned and implemented separately, despite all being rooted in gender inequality and gender-based discrimination against women and girls. While this is intended so that programmes can be tailored accordingly, it can result in isolation of initiatives that would otherwise benefit from sharing of knowledge and good practices and from strategic, coordinated efforts. This policy note explores policy and programming interlinkages and considers entry points in the areas of (i) national legislation, (ii) prevention strategies, (iii) response for survivors, and (iv) data and evidence, for increased coordination and collaboration to advance the objectives of ending FGM/C and other forms of VAWG, in particular intimate partner violence and non-partner sexual violence. The note builds on the background paper “Finding convergence in policy frameworks: A background paper on the policy links between gender, violence against women and girls, and female genital mutilation/cutting” (available below). This policy note is intended for multiple audiences, including those directly involved in policy development, planning and implementing initiatives, those providing technical support, and advocates for ending all forms of VAWG, including FGM/C. This work is the result of a collaboration of UN Women with the UNFPA–UNICEF Joint Programme on FGM/C.
Improving health, social welfare, and human development through women's empowerment in developing countries: The 2016 Girl Up Leadership Summit, Washington, DC, USA.
International Journal of MCH and AIDS. 2016; 5(2):87-91.The United Nations Foundation’s Girl Up campaign, an initiative dedicated to promoting the health, education, and leadership of adolescent girls in developing communities around the world, hosted its annual Girl Up Leadership Summit in Washington, DC from July 11-13 and welcomed more than 275 girl empowerment and women empowerment proponents to take part in leadership training, listen to and learn from influential figures like United Nations Deputy High Commissioner for Human Rights Kate Gilmore and Treasurer of the United States Rosie Rios, and engage in an official lobby day in the nation’s capital. Topics ranged from the issue of child marriage and sexual and reproductive health rights to intersectional feminism and the importance of the next generation of global girl advocates. The purpose and, later on, achievement of the conference was the development of such leaders and Girl Up representatives. Summit attendee and Girl Up Campus Leader Janel Mendoza shares her experience as a longstanding Girl Up supporter and reflects on the preeminent conversations held during and following the summit.
Abidjan, Côte d'Ivoire, World Bank, 2013 Jun. 19 p.In Africa, women are subjected to discriminatory practices that keep them in a vulnerable situation. Their limited access to land, in a continent where the majority of the population depends on agriculture, reduces their access to credit and their capacity to undertake sustainable economic activities to generate income. They hold only 18 percent of agricultural lands and are not better off in administrations. In Cote d'Ivoire, the woman remains marginalized, with a status that is increasingly weakened today by the socio-political situation. Data from the National Statistics Institute highlight their extreme poverty: 75 percent of rural women are living below the poverty line. And they are often deprived of basic social services. Some socio-cultural factors perpetuate traditions that are harmful to girls and women. This report is the culmination of the process initiated by the World Bank as part of the establishment of its program of strengthening the role of women in Ivorian society. It reports summary proposals from the various consultations held both nationally and regionally. Designed in a participatory and decentralized approach, these consultations have made it possible to gather factual and contextual data on the four (04) themes selected for the workshops, as well as proposals that, if translated into actions, would help develop an action plan. This is, and it must be stressed, a study that has the merit of giving the floor directly to hundreds of Ivorian women from all socio-professional categories to develop themselves a roadmap based on their own daily experiences.
Marketing of breast-milk substitutes: National implementation of the international code. Status report 2016.
Geneva, Switzerland, WHO, 2016.  p.This report provides updated information on the status of implementing the International Code of Marketing of Breast-milk Substitutes and subsequent relevant World Health Assembly resolutions (“the Code”) in and by countries. It presents the legal status of the Code, including -- where such information is available -- to what extent Code provisions have been incorporated in national legal measures. The report also provides information on the efforts made by countries to monitor and enforce the Code through the establishment of formal mechanisms. Its findings and subsequent recommendations aim to improve the understanding of how countries are implementing the Code, what challenges they face in doing so, and where the focus must be on further efforts to assist them in more effective Code implementation.
Geneva, Switzerland, WHO, 2013.  p.The WHO Traditional Medicine Strategy 2014–2023 was developed and launched in response to the World Health Assembly resolution on traditional medicine (WHA62.13). The strategy aims to support Member States in developing proactive policies and implementing action plans that will strengthen the role traditional medicine plays in keeping populations healthy. Addressing the challenges, responding to the needs identified by Member States and building on the work done under the WHO traditional medicine strategy: 2002–2005, the updated strategy for the period 2014–2023 devotes more attention than its predecessor to prioritizing health services and systems, including traditional and complementary medicine products, practices and practitioners.
Guttmacher Policy Review. 2015 Spring; 18(2):27-33.The U.S. overseas program for family planning and reproductive health has been under attack from policymakers who are antiabortion and increasingly anti-family planning. The two most notorious of these attacks are the blocking of U.S. funding for the United Nations Population Fund and the enforcement of the global gag rule, which prohibits aid to foreign nongovernmental organizations that engage in abortion services or advocacy with non-U.S. funds. In an ongoing counterproductive cycle, these restrictions have come in and out of effect depending on the political party in power -- a struggle that is expected to heat up again with a socially conservative Congress.
Multilateral, regional, and national determinants of policy adoption: the case of HIV/AIDS legislative action.
International Journal of Public Health. 2013 Apr; 58(2):285-93.OBJECTIVES: This article examines the global legislative response to the HIV/AIDS epidemic with a particular focus on how policies were diffused internationally or regionally, or facilitated internally. METHODS: This article uses event history analysis combined with multinomial logit regression to model the legislative response of 133 countries. RESULTS: First, the results demonstrate that the WHO positively influenced the likelihood of a legislative response. Second, the article demonstrates that development bank aid helped to spur earlier legislative action. Third, the results demonstrate that developed countries acted earlier than developing countries. And finally, the onset and severity of the HIV/AIDS epidemic was a significant influence on the legislative response. CONCLUSION: Multilateral organizations have a positive influence in global policy diffusion through informational advocacy, technical assistance, and financial aid. It is also clear that internal stressors play key roles in legislative action seen clearly through earlier action being taken in countries where the shock of the onset of HIV/AIDS occurred earlier and earlier responses taken where the epidemic was more severe.
Criminal prosecution of a male partner for sexual transmission of infectious diseases: the views of educated people living in Togo.
Sexually Transmitted Infections. 2013 Jun; 89(4):290-4.OBJECTIVE: To examine the views of educated people in Togo on the acceptability of criminal prosecution of a male partner for sexual transmission of infectious diseases (STIDs) to his female partner. METHODS: 199 adults living in Kara, Togo judged acceptability of criminal prosecution for STID in 45 scenarios composed of combinations of five factors: (a) severity of disease; (b) awareness and communication of one's serological status; (c) partners' marital status; (d) number of sexual partners the female partner has and (e) male partner's subsequent attitude (supportive or not). RESULTS: Acceptability was lower (a) when the male partner decided to take care of his female partner he had infected than when he decided to leave, (b) when both partners were informed but decided not to take precautions than when none of them was informed or when only the male partner was informed and (c) when the female partner has had several male sexual partners than when she has had only one. Two qualitatively different views were identified. For 66% of participants, when the male partner accepts to take care of his partner, he should not be sued, except when he did not disclose his serological status. For 34%, when both partners were informed, the male partner should not be sued, irrespective of other circumstances. CONCLUSIONS: Regarding criminal prosecution for STID, most people in the sample endorsed the position of the Joint United Nations Programme on HIV/AIDS that urges governments not to apply criminal law to cases where sexual partners disclosed their status or were not informed of it.
Country implementation of the International Code of Marketing of Breast-Milk Substitutes: status report 2011.
Geneva, Switzerland, WHO, 2013.  p.Globally, breastfeeding has the potential to prevent 220 000 deaths among children under five each year. WHO recommends that all infants should be exclusively breastfed for the first six months of life, but actual practice is low (38%). The implementation and enforcement of International Code of Marketing of Breast-milk Substitutes and subsequent relevant Health Assembly Resolutions (the Code) are critical for an environment that supports proper infant and young child feeding and for the attainment of Millennium Development Goal 4 (reduce child mortality). This report summarizes the progress countries have made in implementing the Code. It is based on data received from WHO Member States between 2008 and 2010 and on information for 2011 from UNICEF. WHO recognizes ongoing progress being made in various countries since 2011, in terms of passing laws, strengthening existing laws or improving monitoring mechanisms. Updates will be included on an ongoing basis in the WHO Global database on the Implementation of Nutrition Action (GINA). In addition, WHO will publish status reports periodically.
Ending overly broad criminalisation of HIV non-disclosure, exposure and transmission: Critical scientific, medical and legal considerations.
Geneva, Switzerland, UNAIDS, 2013 May.  p. (Guidance Note 2013; UNAIDS / JC2351E)The overly broad application of criminal law to HIV non-disclosure, exposure and transmission raises serious human rights and public health concerns. Because of these concerns, the Joint United Nations Programme on HIV / AIDS (UNAIDS) urges States to (i) concentrate their efforts on expanding the use of proven and successful evidence-informed and rights-based public health approaches to HIV prevention, treatment and care, and (ii) limit any application of criminal law to truly blameworthy cases where it is needed to achieve justice. States should strengthen HIV programmes that enable people to know how to protect themselves from HIV and to avoid transmitting it, and they should help people access the services and commodities they need for HIV prevention, treatment, care and support. (Excerpt)
WHO Guidelines on preventing early pregancy and poor reproductive outcomes among adolescents in developing countries.
Journal of Adolescent Health. 2013 May; 52(5):517-522.Adolescent pregnancy and its consequences represent a major public health concern in many low- to middle-income countries of the world. The World Health Organization has recently developed evidence-based guidelines addressing six areas: preventing early marriage; preventing early pregnancy through sexuality education; increasing education opportunities and economic and social support programs; increasing the use of contraception; reducing coerced sex; preventing unsafe abortion; and increasing the use of prenatal care childbirth and postpartum care. In each of these areas, the World Health Organization recommends directions for future research. The summary concludes with a brief look at global and regional initiatives that provide a window of opportunity for stepping up action in this important area.
Dark sides of the proposed Framework Convention on Global Health's many virtues: A systematic review and critical analysis.
Health and Human Rights. 2013 Jun; 15(1):117-134.The costs of any proposal for new international law must be fully evaluated and compared with benefits and competing alternatives to ensure adoption will not create more problems than solutions. A systematic review of the research literature was conducted to categorize and assess limitations and unintended negative consequences associated with the proposed Framework Convention on Global Health (FCGH). A critical analysis then interpreted these findings using economic, ethical, legal, and political science perspectives. Of the 442 documents retrieved, nine met the inclusion criteria. Collectively, these documents highlighted that an FCGH could duplicate other efforts, lack feasibility, and have questionable impact. The critical analysis reveals that negative consequences can result from the FCGH’s proposed form of international law and proposed functions of influencing national budgets, realizing health rights and resetting global governance for health. These include the direct costs of international law, opportunity costs, reducing political dialogue by legalizing political interactions, petrifying principles that may have only contemporary relevance, imposing foreign values on less powerful countries, forcing externally defined goals on countries, prioritizing individual rights over population-wide well-being, further complicating global governance for health, weakening the World Health Organization (WHO), reducing participation opportunities for non-state actors, and offering sub-optimal solutions for global health challenges. Four options for revising the FCGH proposal are developed to address its weaknesses and strengthen its potential for impact. These include: 1) abandoning international law as the primary commitment mechanism and instead pursuing agreement towards a less formal “framework for global health”; 2) seeking fundamental constitutional reform of WHO to address gaps in global governance for health; 3) mobilizing for a separate political platform that completely bypasses WHO; or 4) narrowing the scope of sought changes to one particular governance issue such as financing for global health needs.